The global financial industry is undergoing digital transformation with FinTech startups creating a paradigm shift in the financial sector through digital innovation. This innovation is addressing various hassles that have prevailed in the industry for long – one of which is the inability of organisations to access the services of traditional finance providers. Singapore-based Minterest, a peer-to-business financial technology platform, facilitates financial inclusion of these entities by enhancing and enabling access to financial services. The company paves the way for more transparent and efficient operations for these unbanked and underserved businesses. Minterest is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and holds a Capital Markets Service license to deal in securities. Wei Choong Loo, Co-founder, states, “At Minterest, we take our reputation in the market very seriously. The integrity and experience of our entire team is key to the success of our business.”
Minterest aims to deliver a financial ecosystem that empowers both investors and borrowers to achieve their long-term financial goals. The financial technology platform is founded by a team of former bankers with profound experience in corporate and structured finance to provide simple, cost-effective, and customised solutions for businesses. “We have known each other and worked together for about 13 years and bring our collective fund raising, financial and corporate governance experience to create value for our investors, borrowers and other stakeholders,” says Ronnie Chia, Co-founder and COO, Minterest.
We have a dashboard for our investors and borrowers where they can monitor the status of the loan request 24/7, in real time
One key differentiating factor of Minterest is its speed of executive. It recently raised SGD2 million for a borrower within four days, and within a three-week time frame from its first meeting with the borrower to deal closure. The firms facilitates the borrowers’ journey where it first conducts a basic financial analysis for them. It further analyses the businesses, their cashflow needs and offers them a suitable financing solution. The firm utilizes its own proprietary credit scoring methodology to automatically and swiftly assess and rate each loan request, utilising a combination of quantitative data sourced from third party independent providers (such as Dun and Bradstreet, Singapore Credit Bureau), financials (historical and forward looking), as well as qualitative data including information about the borrowers’ promoters and management team.
Each loan is then priced according to the credit score generated. Once the loan details such as the loan amount, interest rates, and security mechanisms are agreed with the borrower, the loan request is listed on to the platform. “We have a dashboard for our investors and borrowers where they can monitor the status of the loan request 24/7, in real time”, says Charis Liau, Co-founder and CEO, Minterest. Furthermore, investors can screen through the loans using Minterest’s platform and invest directly into the loans after evaluating the information online.
To provide a seamless user experience, the matching of investors to borrowers is done completely online on the platform. Once a loan is funded, a loan repayment profile is generated and each investor would be notified automatically of his repayment schedule. All investments made by the investor can also be easily accessible on the platform and each investor has an e-wallet that reflects each deposit, withdrawal or investment made. To safeguard investors’ funds, the funds are independently held by an international licensed trust services company regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
The Minterest platform is fully scalable allowing multiple deals to be listed and is also able to accommodate large number of investors on its platform. The firm intends to work on a broader spectrum of innovative technologies to further enhance the automation process using big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning to further enhance its credit scoring methodology. Being an acclaimed peer-to-business lending platform in Singapore, Minterest plans to expand its borrowing base to include non-corporate sector and also expand geographically into other APAC countries.
This article was contributed by Apac CIO Outlook